Ok, Don’t Make Me Think, by Steve Krug is not the best book EVER, but definitely of the ones we have read this semester AND probably the best book written about computers, the Web, or anything related to them I have read yet! Mind you, that number is by no means vast, but nonetheless…

Now, several things jump out that I would like to address. But, one that I was particularly fascinated with and somewhat justified my early position in my first Blog Post of the semester was that usability, accessibility and ease of navigation were more important to me than design or presentation. And after several comments and our discussion, I just figured I was in the minority, which was no biggie.

Then, here comes Mr. Krug with his sensible and very readable book for cpu dummies like myself…and, if you don’t mind, I shall quote a few lines from him that serve to validate my earlier thoughts (although, if I got anything out of this class, it’s that my taste is definitely not other people’s and vice-versa, so I guess it’s all for naught anyway, right?):

  1. “From what [Krug has] observed…as many as half [of web users] just aren’t aware of color coding in any useful way. Color is great as an additional cue, but you should never rely on it as the only cue.” (p. 83)
  2. “It’s just as likely that the next user [to view your site] will say that she hates [this color] and that the drawing is too simplistic. Don’t get too excited by individual reactions to site aesthetics.” (p. 151)
  3. “Your site looks amateurish. You can lose goodwill if your site looks sloppy, disorganized or unprofessional, like no effort has gone into making it presentable.
    “Note that while people love to make comments about the appearance of sites…almost no one is going to leave a site just because it doesn’t look great.” (p. 165)

I say hallelujah for Steve Krug, I shall praise his name throughout the Universe as I only do for the Buddha!

Now, in reality, I think both our positions and most of us in this class are not that far apart. In other words, design and presentation/aesthetics is only ONE of the important items in a good website and not having at least some level of attractiveness is not advised. But I shall stick to my original opinion that, for me at least, usability and accessibility (and I am speaking more about ease of use by non-cpu folks than disabled folks, but both apply) rank higher in the panthion of what makes a good website than design – I sure hope Prof. P. doesn’t read this, but she has probably given me up as hopeless by now anyway 🙂

My Comments on folks’ Blogs this week: